Tango Tour-Buenos Aires

What a delicious day!!!

Why is visiting bodegas and trying wines so exhausting???

Yesterday we visited 3 bodegas with wine tastings and crashed Achaval Ferrer’s tasting room for our “picnic” lunch. 

Catena Zapata
The gang at Catena Zapata


We have hired Walter and his 15 person van to take the 8 of us around for these 3 days.  So yesterday we visited the Lujan de Cuyo region – we visited Catena Zapata, Achaval Ferrer, and Alta Vista.  We missed seeing Carmelo Patti and visited him today.


Each winery has its own unique aspects.  I think similar to tango it’s good to experience many wineries – many milongas – to know that there is not 1 way to do things but many as there are people and ideas. 

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Here we are at Achaval Ferrer in their lovely tasting room.  After we had our tasting a few of us bought their lovely Dulce – a sweet wine of malbec grapes.  Then we asked if we could stay and each some lunch.  We all brought some bread, cheese, ham, salami, etc and we had a bottle to share – we had a lovely lunch!



We missed Carmelo Patti even though we had made an appointment with him so we continued on our merry way to Alta Vista.  We had to wait a bit for our tour so we enjoyed the surroundings of the interesting birds hanging out, and the little critters that look like guinea pigs but are a rabbit of sorts!!! and the lovely lavender.

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Today we visited Carmelo Patti.  And I enjoy visiting him so much.  His methods are very different than the other places we visit and we can a real personal approach to the wine making industry.  I think we all managed to buy a bottle from him.  I don’t remember what i bought last year but this year I am coming home with a signed bottle of 2002 Cabernet Sauvignon.  YEAH!!!  He is a big fan of letting the wines age and then he is a big fan of letting wine decant – breathe!!!   If you’re going to take the time to dress or to cook a lovely meal then the wine should have time to do the same – breathe!   

THEN we went to our lunch with wine pairings.  We had scheduled to visit Ruca Malen, which is the same place that we had enjoyed a lunch last year BUT at the nth our last night our reservation was canceled due to a large group of journalists who would be attending.  SO Rommel had them suggest and help us with our reservation at Melipal.  What a lovely afternoon!!!!

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Check out all those glasses!!!!!  Each course was accompanied by a wine from their winery.  We discovered that the Chef here is the same at Ruca Malen. We were in good hands!  They were accommodating to my veggie / no lacto needs and I think everyone enjoyed their meal.  We took about 3 hours to consume with pleasure!!!




The Chef is Florencia and the sommelier who helped in the wine pairings was also a woman.  This was refreshing to discover!!!  Ryan, Rommel and I had been to Ruca Malen last year and had enjoyed the food but not so much the wine. This lunch we all agreed that the food and the wine were both quite delicious!  We also managed to dance a tango in their hall on our way out! 

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AND THEN!  Why Ryan and Joey decided to run a sprint across their lawn is beyond my understanding but they did…







So Melipal was a success!!!  We made it back to our Mendoza home all content and a little tipsy!


Tonite we have a local milonga to attend.  We attended last year and thought it would be fun to revisit this year. 

Ryan brought the latest in apple technology on this trip – his IPad and we have been lucky enough to enjoy several games of scrabble on it!!!  And I finally won a game between Ryan, Kaitlin and myself today!! YEAH!!!




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Off to Mendoza!!!

At Retiro
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the gang arrives in Mendoza
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Some more picture links fron Delisa’s Facebook…

Will see if these work.  These are the lovely Delisa Myles’ fotos that she has taken here in Buenos Aires.  Totally worth seeing….



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yummy places to eat

I had another yummy meal at 1 of my local favorites: Origen.  The corner of Humberto I and Peru here in San Telmo.  One of tonite’s specials of the day was an amazing “Wok Hindu”.  It had grain rice, bean sprouts, zucchini, sesame seeds, diced chicken, peanuts, and pears.  IT was incredibly tasty – such a diverse flavor.  Love this healthy place to eat.   I am so glad to have it.

Another great new place that I found this trip was/ is Cafe San Juan.  On San Juan near Balcarce: San Juan 450. phone 4300-1112.  We found this place in the Guia Oleo.  What a delicious place.  Rommel and I took Katie there for a late Graduation present. 

Katie at Cafe San Juan
we enjoyed tapa sized appetizers of brie and sundried tomatoes, tortilla de papa with morones on toast, then main dishes of rabbit in port wine sauce, brochette of shrimp, like a paella.  Then a delicious wine to wash it all down!  We also had some delicious desserts.  There was an apple tartlike thing with homemade cinnamon ice cream.  Then a mousselike treat with all kinds of flavors in it!
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The last place I want to mention is Taberna baska on Chile and Tacuari.  (chile 980)  Another lovely meal.  Delicious options.  They even have “centolla” – the crab from the Patagonia area.  It has some really interesting options including paella and shrimps and calamari.  And some great sounding dishes.  I hope to go their again.

So – now we get ready for Mendoza.  We leave Sunday – tomorrow in the evening – there will be 8 of us.  Looking forward to getting away from the city.

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The last day!

Here is the latest link for pictures I have uploaded to Facebook



The tour ended on a positive note.  We were able to take the official “shoe” picture as well!  I think there are 35 pairs here!!!!




We spent the last few days with the group somewhat divided. We picked several different places and allowed them to pick or come to both milongas. 

Tuesday we had some of the group go to an early milonga and a small handful of us went to another milonga later.  I think the group still had fun attending the milonga that they felt they would most enjoy or just to explore a different setting. 

Wednesday we had a fabulous class with Analia y Marcelo.  We were lucky to have them for teachers 2 years ago and so happy to have them again this year.  It’s amazing to watch teachers grow as well and I still love their approach and the material and ideas they have to share.  They were fun!analia y marcelo et al
I think they all got something from this class. It is hard not to.  They offer some lovely ideas for connection and they always always stress dancing not this idea of a follower and a leader but DANCING!  I like this!




After the class the group did their thing to get ready for the evening’s milonga. They had 2 choices again.  A small group of us went to the later evening TangoLab.  I thought that this might be an interesting place to go for another casual venue with a young scene.  I also knew the DJ – Mathieu – a Canadian transplant to Buenos Aires. 

TangoLab - the guys

Here are the guys!!  Hanging out!  There was a performance here as well.  Which for some reason we haven’t seen too many this trip.  Maybe because it’s hard to top Julio y Corina from the first night!!!

TangoLab wasn’t very crowded but it was very relaxed.  It was a different feel and had a mostly younger scene.



Thursday was the last full day of “stuff”!  We had our early afternoon tea at Cafe Tortoni on Avenida de Mayo.  We decided to try this cafe this year as it is a nice walk from San Telmo. www.cafetortoni.com.ar/  Unfortunately, I think, Las Violettas is much much better and will return to that next year! 

Cafe Tortoni

I think Tortoni relies heavily on its historical significance and it’s expensive and not as beautiful.  We did have our long table in a room at the back.  It was kind of funny because the room had a large Buenos Aires scape and we took advantage of the good lighting to do lots of fun poses!!! 

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Maybe you can see the backdrop in this next picture…. Here’s Jose Luis, one of the assistants.

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We feasted on coffee and alfajores, Lydia’s new found love!!  And we had cake and churros.  It was fun and nice to have the group together.  They wanted pictures with the boys and just Sabrina, our female assistant.  We had just the girls and the boy assistants!  Many different combinations!





Thursday night we all went to Nino Bien. This is one of my favorite milongas and I asked that everyone attend. There were a few people who attended another milonga earlier and we all met up at Nino Bien.  The night was slow going it seemed.  The hall was never quite as packed as it gets but Rommel and I stayed quite late.  The rest of the gang was done in several waves throughout the evening.  I had the opportunity to share several tandas with Dany “El Flaco”, who was one of the teachers on the tour 2 years ago.  He had just come out of some sciatic surgery about 46 days ago (if I understood correctly!) and here he was, well, here we were! 

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Today the tour ended with checkouts and with some final shopping. It had rained last night but the sun managed to break out and leave those who were leaving a sunny day to travel.  5 of the group make their journey home today.  Lydia, with a bag packed with alfajores, shoes for all and hopefully great memories. 





We have just a couple days of rest and then on Sunday there are 8 of us venturing to Mendoza for some vino and relaxation.  We will have 1 day of dancing while there. 

I hope to spend some time in the next few blogs discussing some observations on the city. 


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